DIY Decor Tips + Tricks

DECORATING ON THE GO

paint swatches final

For months, I’ve been keeping paint swatches of the colors we’ve used in our house in my wallet just in case I happen to come across fabric or wall art that might look good somewhere. The only problem was, the swatches were so small, it was hard to really get a good idea of how the combination would look.

The obvious solution was to make something a little larger that would accurately capture the wall color. It didn’t need to fit in my wallet, just my purse. Of course, this isn’t exactly the biggest problem in the world, so it just sat in the back of my head, and I didn’t really give it much more thought until I stumbled upon this at Office Max in the scrapbook/craft section:

It’s 5 pages of 6″x6″ chipboard, made into a “book” with a metal ring and cut into a cool pattern. I’m not sure what they are normally used for, but it looked like a good alternative to my teensy weensy paint chips.

When I got home, I gathered the paint from the shed. At the moment, we only have four paint colors, including the trim, so I’m just saving the fifth card until we have another paint color to add to the mix. Now, when it comes to painting, I tend to make a mess. Apparently I’m not coordinated enough or something. I don’t know. So, just in case, I laid down some kraft paper in the dining room, and set each card on a paper plate to dry:

Once they were dry, I put the cards back on the ring and ta da! New and improved, larger handy dandy paint swatches for when I’m on the go:

These swatches are so much fun to use, I ended up making a second set to keep in my desk.

Now, I’m not sure what I’d do without these. They’re small enough to fit in my purse, but large enough that I can get a real idea of what something might look like against our walls. The perfect solution to a small problem!

How about you? Any on the go decorating tips up your sleeve?

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23 Comments

  • Reply
    Kristen @ Popcorn on the Stove
    September 5, 2011 at 9:53 am

    I don’t keep swatches in my purse but this chipboard book you found could make the change that! We’re working on re-doing our living room so it would be nice to have all of our colors in one place!

  • Reply
    Lori H
    September 5, 2011 at 9:54 am

    Awesome idea! Thanks for sharing.

  • Reply
    Addison
    September 5, 2011 at 12:34 pm

    I love this idea! I made something similar using wood circles and it’s been so helpful when shopping for the house.

  • Reply
    Hrafnhildur
    September 5, 2011 at 1:22 pm

    Those are of course for scrapbooking ;o), but what a great idea. Thanks!

    • Reply
      Ashley
      September 5, 2011 at 3:52 pm

      Ah, thanks! The art of scrapbooking is foreign to me, so I wasn’t completely sure, haha.

  • Reply
    Tamsyn
    September 5, 2011 at 5:15 pm

    Genius! Such a great idea, I’ll be doing this for sure πŸ™‚

  • Reply
    Natalie
    September 5, 2011 at 7:39 pm

    This is such a great idea! Cute AND functional. πŸ™‚

  • Reply
    Lindsey (One Sweet World)
    September 6, 2011 at 10:50 am

    What a GREAT idea!

  • Reply
    Jana Bishop
    September 6, 2011 at 12:21 pm

    Very clever. Love.

  • Reply
    Dacia
    September 6, 2011 at 12:30 pm

    Fantastic idea, love it! And the fact that they’re cut into those fun shapes is just a bonus!!

  • Reply
    Melissa
    September 6, 2011 at 12:33 pm

    Oh my, I absolutely LOVE those colors! Have you listed them on your blog? If not, what color and maker are they?

    • Reply
      Ashley
      September 6, 2011 at 6:39 pm

      Thanks, Melissa! You can read more about the paint colors by clicking on the “Painting?” button in the sidebar (right under the “Contact” box). Hope that helps! : )

  • Reply
    Andrea
    September 6, 2011 at 12:39 pm

    Great idea!

  • Reply
    Beth
    September 6, 2011 at 12:44 pm

    This is one of the most useful DIY suggestions I’ve ever read! I have to keep going back to the store to get new paint chips because the ones I carry in my purse keep getting squished beyond recognition. Thanks for sharing such a great tip!

  • Reply
    Lindsey
    September 6, 2011 at 2:56 pm

    ok…..Ashley – I’m gonna need to score that incredible wallet asap! I LOVE it! Also, your swatch idea is great – perfect for keeping everything organized but stylist at the same time! I’m a swatch fanatic so I might have to do a little swatch upgrading too!

  • Reply
    Melanie @ Mailbox Journey
    September 7, 2011 at 9:24 am

    What an amazing idea! I love it! πŸ™‚

    (I love those paint colors too)

  • Reply
    Tracy
    September 7, 2011 at 10:01 am

    Srsly. I need that wallet. Like yesterday.

    • Reply
      Amanda
      September 7, 2011 at 4:36 pm

      I will second this! Ashley where did you snatch that gorgeous thing up?!

  • Reply
    Katie @ explanationrequired
    September 7, 2011 at 9:10 pm

    Really fantastic idea! I even have some chipboard in my craft stash.

  • Reply
    Lindsey Griffith
    September 8, 2011 at 9:45 pm

    Hi Ashley,

    I love your blog! Your house is beautiful! I love ALL your color combos! What are your swatches from PB and Dwell going to be used for? Are you buying new furniture? Where did you get your Master Suite Furniture? Thanks!!!

    • Reply
      Ashley
      September 9, 2011 at 11:50 am

      Thanks! The Master furniture is from Haverty’s (it’s called Copley Square). We’re looking to buy a few new pieces of furniture in the future, so swatch collecting has become a new hobby : )

  • Reply
    Emily
    September 10, 2011 at 9:06 am

    I grabbed a loop from the Behr display at HD and put all my swatches on it. Then I took my Pantone Fashion Home book and pulled all the colors out of my rugs and accessories. I love having all my colors with me when I shop!

  • Reply
    Alana @ Domestic Bliss Diaries
    May 3, 2012 at 3:38 pm

    I know this is an old post but, … I bow to your genius!

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